Pets are the Real Stars of Working Remotely

Written by
Rebecca Smith

Oct 1, 2020

Oct 1, 2020 • by Rebecca Smith

The ability to work from home can be the envy of all of your friends. This increased level of freedom still has challenges that are unique to remote professionals. These challenges include staying motivated without a manager looking over your shoulder or meetings feeling less personal. The positives truly outweigh the negatives as you no longer have to dress up for work. A number of people have opted to only dress from the waist up for important meetings. The added time you can spend relaxing or with family is the best benefit. Your pets are going to really enjoy you working remotely and pets have been stealing the show with more people working remotely than ever before. 

There have been so many funny videos on social media of both kids, parents, and the cutest pets like a mini goldendoodle or pug not realizing they are on camera. People have used technology at their disposal to stay close with friends and run business efficiently. A number of people have limited contact besides their significant other and their pets. Dr. Hannah Fahey from the University of Limerick has seen her two canines become quite popular due to their antics on video calls. 

Dr. Fahey was quoted saying, ““In anticipation of the close, I had begun to trial online delivery of my lectures earlier in the week,” she “However, I hadn’t consulted our canine companions prior to starting the Zoom session, and unfortunately the timing coincided with the postman!” Students were immensely tickled by the barking dog and it added levity to the lecture. The added lightness can be a great relief for students that are online all day for school. 

Fahey is far from the only professional that has had their furry friend impact their Zoom meetings or other video calls. Pets do not care about the importance of your call if they feel like they deserve a bit of attention. Pets tend to end up under our feet and sometimes end up in laps in the middle of video calls. Rabbits and birds have also made appearances as pets are a great source of company when enjoying the opportunity of working from home. Mar Hicks has a rabbit Camber that refuses to leave your side until the sufficient amount of petting is done. Hicks is an associate professor and author of Programmed Inequality, a book about women in computing. Like so many others throughout education, Hicks is now working remotely. “It has changed all of my teaching and meetings, and teaching especially has created a huge amount of new work as professors struggle to suddenly teach online,”.

Fahey understands that her dogs are the stars of the show but there is also learning to be done. She also acknowledges the importance of a break in class to enjoy her furry friends. In a world where there is so much going on, a dog during an in-depth lecture making people laugh is worth its weight in gold. 

. Hicks made a comment about cheering students up, “I’ve been posting pictures of [Camber] to Twitter to try to cheer folks up a little, because we are all going through such a stressful time right now,” they said. “I certainly have been appreciating cute animal pics more nowadays.”

Tips to Deal with Furry Friends and Zoom Calls

The one aspect that you have to keep in mind is that tired pets rarely beg for constant attention. Taking out dogs for a long walk before a big Zoom meeting can work wonders. Cats are going to be more difficult to deal with as they will come and go as they please. The added problem of putting a leash on a cat is enough to allow them to interrupt nearly any meeting. There are other routes to take as you can give your pet some kind of treat that will take some time to finish. A bone for a dog or new toy for a cat can allow you to work distraction-free for a short period. 

Most clients or managers are not going to take it too seriously if your pet decides to make a guest appearance during a call. With this being said, there are meetings that are too important to interrupt. You do not want to be pitching a sales prospect only to lose your flow due to your dog barking because they want to go for a walk. You also need to make sure that cords are not exposed to dogs, cats, or rabbits of any size. You can ruin your cord and could potentially harm your pet. You do not want an electrocuted pet due to not staying proactive about putting computer cords up.